American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Pakistan, Great Trango Tower, North Face

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1985

Great Trango Tower, North Face. After hiking up the Trango Glacier to below our original objective, the Uli Biaho Tower, and then watching rockfall continually hammering the only approach to the east face, we gave up without starting. Fortunately our liaison officer gave us permission to try another peak in the area. The 20,650-foot (6294-meter) Great Trango Tower was directly across the glacier, and so Andy Selters and I decided to try the north face while Paul Aubrey and Jon DeVries chose to hike back out. We could see most of the route from Base Camp and it looked rather straight-forward. Four days later on August 19, Andy and I were on top with a moderate route below us. Climbing alpine-style, our first camp was near the base of the Nameless Tower at the top of a long scree gully. Then we moved up through a series of rubble-strewn ledges intermixed with moderate rock climbing. We soloed through this part to bivouac along the north ridge in some boulders. The next day we climbed the hanging glacier on the north face to a high bivouac at 20,000 feet. In still perfect weather we did several leads of steep ice to the summit ridge, which we followed to the true summit.

Scott Woolums

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